Zoook is a well-known name when it comes to low-cost audio devices, and the last product from the company that we tried out was the rugged Zoook Rocker Armor XL Bluetooth speaker. Today, we're looking at the Zoook Rocker RDX 01, an affordable pair of around-ear headphones. The RDX 01 has an MRP of Rs. 1,499, but it's available online at around Rs. 800, putting it in the same range as the venerable Sennheiser HD 180. The HD 180 has long been a go-to pick for over-ears under Rs. 1,000, thanks to its reasonable sound quality, comfort, and extra-long cable. Does the Zoook Rocker RDX 01 have what it takes to claim this space? Read on to know more.
The Zoook Rocker RDX 01 has a detachable braided cable that is pretty hard to tangle (we tried) and an inline mic remote, though it's the simple one-button type. It connects via a 3.5mm jack, and the cable is pretty standard on both ends, so you can easily replace it if needed.
The headphones have an impedance rating of 32Ohms, a frequency range of 20Hz - 20,000Hz, and 40mm drivers. The design is pretty standard, with a good amount of padding on the earcups and on the headband. The band has the usual three-piece sliding design to adjust its fit - the cups themselves are fixed and can't be adjusted.
The body is made entirely of plastic, and while the shiny black design with red accents looks nice, it feels tacky and quite fragile. However, this also means that the headphones are light enough to wear comfortably for extended periods of time. Also, the fit is comfortable enough that our ears didn’t start to feel hot, which is a definite plus.
The audio profile of the Zoook Rocker RDX 01 can be summed up in one word - flat. Actually no, a second word is needed - underwhelming. Although Zoook might boast about its 40mm drivers, the fact is that the headphones are really soft. Across the whole range, there is not much going on with the audio.
We tested the Rocker RDX 01 with a mix of audio from a CD player and from a smartphone, but we needn't have bothered. Everything we listened to, from the Chemical Brothers' Galvanise, to the Beatles' Yellow Submarine, was flat.
That isn’t necessarily a bad thing. If you're looking for headphones to use when watching videos on your phone or tablet, this feels like a nice, comfortable option to have around. And unlike a lot of other entry-level options, at least this one doesn't try to stress on the bass and thus muddy everything.
For day-to-day voice calling, this particular headset was actually pretty satisfactory. We used it for calls over a weekend, and no one had any real problems picking up what we were saying. The Rocker RDX 01 is clear enough that you won't have much trouble using it as a phone headset.
Sound isolation is limited - you can definitely hear most of the outside world, but the good news is that the audio being played doesn't leak out, so you could use these on the commute without annoying others.
We listened to a lot of different music, watched TV shows and YouTube videos, and also played a few games while using the the Zoook Rocker RDX 01. During all this time, the headphones performed best when watching TV. They're basic and don't do much to the sound, but they're clear enough and don’t get in the way.
That might not be high praise, but if you want something simple and affordable, then you should consider the Zoook Rocker RDX 01. With its inline mic, it could be useful on your commute and for calls as well. It is certainly very comfortable, and nice to look at too. That comfort makes it a good bet for when you're relaxing at night and catching up on videos without disturbing others, where this pair actually works out reasonably well.
The Sennheiser HD 180 might be the more obvious choice as it offers a similar sound plus better build quality and design, but it also has a very tangle-prone cable. We would find it hard to recommend the Zoook Rocker RDX 01 at its MRP, but since it's listed online at around Rs. 800, it's not a bad alternative to the HD 180.
MRP: Rs. 1,499
Ratings (Out of 5)